SAN JOSE -- Police have arrested a Sunnyvale man they believe is responsible for a string of six South Bay bank robberies since mid-January.
Thomas Rhodes, 45, was taken into custody in Modesto without incident after San Jose police obtained a warrant for his arrest.
"This was an excellent collaborative effort by all involved agencies to get a dangerous individual off the streets," San Jose Robbery Unit Commander Tommy Morales said in a statement.
Police spokesman Officer Albert Morales said there was a concern that the serial bank robber was becoming increasingly violent. In the most recent case, a Feb. 22 robbery of a Union Bank on Blossom Hill Road in San Jose, the suspect for the first time brandished a handgun.
Police say Rhodes is responsible for six bank robberies in Cupertino, Saratoga, Santa Clara and San Jose between Jan. 18 and Feb. 22.
The others occurred Jan. 18 at a US Bank on South De Anza Boulevard in Cupertino; Jan. 24 at a Wells Fargo Bank on Almaden Expressway in San Jose; Feb. 1 at a Bank of the West on Cox Avenue in Saratoga; Feb. 6 at a Wells Fargo Bank on Homestead Road in Cupertino; and Feb. 19 at a Wells Fargo Bank on Homestead Road in Santa Clara.
In each of the robberies, the suspect gave a bank teller a note demanding money and got away with an undisclosed amount of cash.
The Santa Clara County Sheriff's Department issued a news release on the serial bank robber on Feb. 21. The next day, San Jose police received information about the suspect's identity.
On Monday, the San Jose robbery unit obtained a warrant for Rhodes' arrest. A car associated with Rhodes was spotted and stopped later that day in Modesto. Rhodes was arrested and booked into Stanislaus County Jail, where he is being held. Morales said it's not known when Rhodes will be transferred to Santa Clara County jail.
Anyone with information regarding any of the bank robberies can contact Detective Ryan Chan of the San Jose Police Department's Robbery Unit at 408-277-4166, Detective Sgt. Paula McAllister at the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office at 408-808-4500 or Detective Sgt. Hoesing at Santa Clara Police Department at 408- 615-4814. People can also anonymously call Silicon Valley Crimestoppers at 408-947-STOP (7867) or may go to www.tipsubmit.org and may be eligible for a reward.